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Hi you all,


My workplace are looking into Vectorworks, and i am the man to setup our new template.

I was told, that they want to draw in 1:1 scale, so the design layers are in 1:1.

Our sheet layers (viewports) is typical in 1:100 and 1:200.


Everything is good, excpet of one "hopfully" small thing.

We have different line types in our drawings (water, electric, gas etc.) and these have different line styles and colors.

I have made different classes to these lines, so it is easy to switch around them and to edit the style.


Now the problem:

When i draw a line in my design layer (scale 1:1) can i see the color of the line, but the style is "gone". Well it is not gone, but I have to zoom alot in to see it.

When I then switch to my sheet layer (scale 1:100) is the line just fine, with the color and style.


Is there a way (a check mark, option, etc) to do so the line is looking correct both in my design layer and sheet layer?


Alternativ must we draw in scale 1:100. 

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This is the subject of much debate on these forums. In order for you to see linetypes in any way close to what they will resemble in a scaled Viewport, you will need to persuade your colleagues to draw using Design Layer scales that match the intended output of the drawing.


A common misunderstanding concerning the use of Design Layer scale is that you are pre-scaling your objects. This is not the case. What you are doing is providing WYSIWYG functionality with Linetypes, Lineweights, Textstyles, Hatches and other attributes that are based on page scaling. So to that end, you can change the scale of the design layer to whatever you like and it will have no impact on the viewport output at all. (Apart from text for which you you will need to check the Scale Text box in the Design Layer Scale dialogue box)


If your office mostly output at 1:100, then ask your colleagues to try design layer scales set to 1:100. When you need to output viewports to 1:200, then all you need to do in those viewports is to scale the page based assets by 0.5 (Advanced properties button in the Viewport OIP).


I am sure others will chime in!

Edited by markdd
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Based on my experience with now dated versions of ACAD, AutoCAD and VectorWorks handle scaling and units differently.  All VW objects, as I understand it, are stored in memory as 1:1 in the underlying unit (I think it is millimeters, correct me if I am wrong about that).  Layer scales, as Mark points out, only affect graphical display of the attributes he mentions, plus font size.


You cannot change the way a line looks while working in a design layer.  You can scale attributes in a Viewport by using the "Advanced Properties" dialog box in the OIP.  But I use this only for instances when I want to output the content of a drawing at different scales in different Viewports.  It makes no sense to have an arbitrary rule that design layers must always be 1:1.  There is no difference in the drawing experience or actual geometry of objects drawn in layers with different scales, except with respect to the presentation attributes Mark and I have mentioned.  If you want to know how your dashed lines will look, or how much space a block of text will take, draw in a design layer scaled to the output desired for the drawing.

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You always draw 1:1 (a door = 800mm wide), but your display scale of the Design Layer is best kept close to the output scale of the View Ports. That way hatches and text need less correction scaling. I have a fixed Design Layer scale of 1:50 as it lies close to output scales I use most: 1:10, 1:20, 1:50, 1:100 and 1:200.

Just my 2cts.

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